Octopuses and squid are masters of RNA editing while leaving DNA intact

These changes could explain the intelligence and flexibility of shell-less cephalopods

image of an octopus

Octopuses and other shell-less cephalopods commonly edit their RNA without changing their DNA. Scientists don’t yet know why.


Many writers grouse when an editor makes a change in a story, but the consequences of changing a single word usually aren’t that dire.

Not so with genetic instructions for making proteins. Even a small change can prevent a protein from doing its job properly, with possibly deadly consequences.